Statement by Gender Working Group for International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking

On this International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, World Federation Against Drugs together with the global community is determines to strengthen the action and cooperation to achieve the goal of an international society free from drugs by recognising substance abuse disorder as a health care issue.

Factors that contribute to enhanced vulnerability include older age, widowhood, poverty, and living in areas of armed conflict. This year’s theme addressing drug challenges in health and humanitarian crisis for the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, including a focus on the role of families in drug use prevention and youth development in humanitarian settings. Over 1,5 billion people in the world are exposed to conflict and humanitarian crises, where families are the frontline of defence. Therefore, it is important to learn and build on the ability of the family and develop the skills of the family.

Women with substance use disorders face unique challenges, which are partly influenced by sex (differences based on biology) and gender (differences based on culturally defined rules for men & women). As treatment services historically mainly focused on males, the lack of gender-sensitive and gender-disaggregated evaluation has left women in distinctive obstacles to access effective treatment and rehabilitation. The WFAD´s Gender Working Group actively advocates gender equality and emphasises the need to integrate evidence-based, gender-sensitive, trauma-informed and culturally sensitive services in the field of prevention, treatment and recovery. The Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women both have an integral part in our constitution and work. We further reiterate the importance of both conventions and are working to include the rights of women and children in everything we do… Read our full statement here.

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